The growing field of terahertz (THz) optics poses important challenges: the unusual interaction of THz radiation with usual optical materials, and the constraints on optical design imposed by the very large wavelengths involved. In this Applied Optics article, the authors use a tabletop 3D printer and common polymers to manufacture phase plates in order to generate Bessel beams. Interest in Bessel beams comes from their diffractionless propagation allowing, among other things, invariant lateral resolution over large focal depths. By adjusting the geometry, i.e. spiral wave plates or axicons, and parameters both zero and high order mode Bessel beams can be generated. The authors demonstrate the efficiency of the generation process using interferometry and compare results to both analytical and numerical simulations. This work contributes to both the on-going effort for efficient THz imaging and to THz optical communication.
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